NDLEA seizes 64,000 Cartridges, Intercepts 34 Kids In Anambra, Kogi
Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have seized 64,000 pump action gun cartridges and a new gun at a store located in Success Line, Marine Modern Market, Onitsha in Awka North Local Government Area of Anambra State.
The discovery, which led to the arrest of an arms dealer, 34-year-old Donatus Onyemachi Igwebudu, followed credible intelligence on drugs and arms deal in the area. Backed by soldiers, NDLEA operatives stormed the store on Wednesday and moved the arm and ammunition to its office in Awka.
In another development, NDLEA operatives on patrol along Okene-Lokoja Expressway in Kogi State on Thursday intercepted 34 children between the ages of 8 and 14 being trafficked from Ijebu Ode, Ogun State to Abuja.
The minors packed in two commercial buses– Toyota Sienna and a 12-Seater Mazda with registration numbers Lagos LND124FV and Oyo BDJ-683YK–were recovered from the human trafficking syndicate.
The bus drivers confirmed that the kids were handed over to them by a woman at Ijebu Ode to be conveyed to Abuja, adding that on arrival in FCT, the woman was to call another bus driver who would convey the children to Riyom in Plateau State.
It was further revealed that the children were initially trafficked from Plateau State to Ijebu Ode, where they were distributed to different households as domestic servants. Some of the children were discovered to have served for two years and their rewards sent to the woman’s agent in Jos.
While commending the officers and men of Anambra and Kogi states commands of the NDLEA for their vigilance and preparedness to work in synergy with other security agencies in their areas of responsibility, Chairman and Chief Executive of the agency, Brig. Gen. Mohammed Buba Marwa (rtd) charged them to sustain the tempo.
He directed that the arm and ammunition, along with the suspect arrested in Anambra, be transferred to the police while the 34 trafficked children are to be transferred to the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP) for further investigation.
Meanwhile, mobilisation of more support for the on-going war against drug trafficking and abuse in the country has` received a boost from the armed forces as the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Leo Irabor; Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Farouk Yahaya; Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Azee Gambo and the Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Oladayo Amao, at separate meetings pledged to support NDLEA to achieve its goal of ridding Nigeria of narcotics.
The military chiefs made the commitments when Marwa led a team of the agency’s officials to pay them advocacy visit at their headquarters in Abuja on Thursday.
While meeting with the Chief of Defence Staff, Marwa commended the armed forces for their sacrifice, patriotism and gallantry in keeping the nation safe and secure. He expressed NDLEA’s appreciation of the collaboration and support from the military. He added that the visit was to seek more ways to strengthen the existing partnership with the armed forces.
“There’s no doubt that illicit drugs fuel and enhance criminalities, hence the need for more collaboration; a partnership that is mutually beneficial because when the problem of drugs is taken out of the security challenge equation, the military will have less to do in tackling terrorism, banditry and kidnapping”, he stated.
Gen. Irabor commended Marwa for his laudable achievements within a short time of assuming leadership of the NDLEA.